Now let’s use this episode to define another term – food. I want to deal with this issue now because food is such wedge issue between the Church and the Jewish people, and even causes severe dissention within the Church itself. Let me be unequivocal The lord intended for food to be used as a means to divide and polarize Genesis 1:29-30 explains what food is defined as at this point in history.
29 Then God said, “Here! Throughout the whole earth I am giving you as food every seedbearing plant and every tree with seed-bearing fruit. 30 And to every wild animal, bird in the air and creature crawling on the earth, in which there is a living soul, I am giving as food every kind of green plant.” And that is how it was. Food for mankind and animals was plants and plants alone. Now did that mean that some animals didn’t eat other animals and that man did NOT eat meat at this time? No; rather it meant that God defined food as plants and therefore when animals or humans ate animals (or other things) they were eating things that were NOT food. Not even fish was for food as of this time. Let’s explore that. Noach was told to bring food into the Ark for his family and for the Animals Again, what is food? Food is what is appropriate as a source of nutrition for our bodies. The question that is larger, however, is: who defines what is appropriate as food and what is not. Who defines it? What SHOULD be consumed as food contrasted with what might be (but ought not to be) consumed as food.
God defined food in the first chapter of Genesis. However man soon decided he preferred something else to be added to his diet. But to God’s way of thinking humans (and apparently some animals) began to eat things that are forbidden because they are NOT food. Think about it, can you eat dirt? Of course you can and anyone who has a child or grandchild has probably watched in horror as they gulped down a mouthful of dirt before you could stop them. Do you know why they ate dirt? Because in some way it smelled and tasted good to them. So why would you want to stop them? Because it’s not food; dirt is for GROWING food. Food, by God’s definition, is not merely anything that you can manage to get into your mouth and swallow, or anything that might taste reasonably good.
Not even anything just because it can be digested That is the entire point of God carefully defining what His people may and may not eat in the Law of Moses. God has carefully defined what food is and what food is not. Eating food that is not kosher (so to speak) is to eat things that are not food. Now of course Hebrew Tradition has created a lot of rules and regulations on the subject and much of it is of a very questionable nature.
Rules have been created that seem to go well beyond the rather simple intent of what is proper eating as described in the Torah. But the bottom line is this: when the Bible uses the term food, it by definition means things that God has assigned for men to eat. That’s what it means. Whether Old Testament or New, when a Hebrew speaks of food it ONLY means Kosher food because all else is NOT food. You’ll never see in the Bible the word “kosher” or “authorized” or “permitted” used as a modifier to the word “food” because it would be redundant. Food is ONLY things that are divinely authorized and clean (ritually clean) and meant to be eaten..
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